Let Raekwon and Nas Floss on "Rich & Black"!!

After the release of his latest album Shaolin vs. Wu-Tang, Raekwon harnessed the ability to be flashy and educative at the same time - something that is rarely seen in today's music. This comes in light of his new video with Nas for the single “Rich & Black.”

Before everyone goes on their "here's another 'money, cash, hoes'" kick, please pay attention to the lyrical content of the song and its sampling. Best quote: "I hate to see you act like a slave to get an advance here and advance there because somebody else controls your destiny." This re-tells the flows spat by Nas and Raekwon about being richer - not only in pockets - but in minds. Watch the video for the whole idea of their message.

Yes, the video is not as intelligent as the record, and in fact dumbed down to the average rap industry cookie-cutter video. Nevertheless, give these cats some credit for applying street-friendly knowledge and empowerment to their music.

Nas and Raekwon has always been the type of emcees to kick something for both the streets and the intellectuals to love and relate, and although they've shown growth from that path it doesn't mean they aren't allowed to return to that. We can date these finding back to Nas’s "If I Ruled The World" and Raekwon's narration on the Wu-Tang classic “C.R.E.A.M.” (YouTube videos here - Nas "If I Rule The World" and Wu-Tang "C.R.E.A.M.")

We've been so used to hearing this type of rich and flashy floss music misrepresented by those without knowledge that when someone applies a greater meaning to flossing that it gets ignored. Instead, we should embrace such sophistication that comes out of such a gritty and grimy industry. There's not a simple way to explain the reception of this record and the video, so here's what I got:

It's a shame that music listening has been reduced to keywords, SEO-style lyricism and what the beats sound like. People have taken a expedient effort to listen to their music, like, if they hear "swag" it's an automatic "no" - whether or not it's in a sarcastic context, its definitive form or if the person is against it - it's still received negatively. Same goes for grey areas, such as songs with material-oriented content.

No A-B-C raps have, or ever will, came out of either emcee’s mouths, but the perceived reception is that no flossing should be celebrated. FOH with that mess! As long as Raekwon, Nas, or whoever spits lyrics that all hiphop fans can relate to, I'm game.

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